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Photo: Philip Deslippe


A Conversation with ISIS AQUARIAN

Co-Author of The Source:
The Untold Story of Father Yod and The Source Family

father yod and isis aquarian

Isis Aquarian has lived an extraordinary life. And any one phase of her life might be viewed as an extraordinary time. During the 1960s, she worked in Washington, D.C. for the Lyndon Johnson administration, then moved to New York where she met Andy Warhol and Salvador Dali. She eventually landed in Los Angeles where she experienced the whole hippy, music scene — and met the influential and enigmatic figure, Father Yod.

Isis is the co-author of “The Source: The Untold Story of Father Yod, Ya Ho Wa 13, and The Source Family,” a book that documents the life of Father Yod, Isis, and The Source Family in Los Angeles during the 1960s and ’70s.

Today, Isis lives in Hawaii, a place that comes close to paradise for her. She is a warm and friendly person, who is always open to new thoughts and ideas. Here is a woman who has more energy and enthusiasm than most people half her age. She lives life to the fullest and still has much work to do before her journey here comes to an end. This year will see the release of a documentary film called, “The Source Family,” in which she is the Associate Producer, as well as the venue for using her archives of family home movies and photos. There are several other projects in the works as well.

What follows is an interview conducted over the last few months.


the source family

The Writing Disorder: Where did you grow up?

Isis Aquarian: I grew up in military family. My father was in the Air Force. But I remember it being basically in California. We also lived in Hawaii for a few years, and I always remembered my time there and it always felt like home — my soul is at peace here and happy for some reason … So when The Source moved from L.A. to Hawaii, I was elated. And after Yahowha’s passing and the dispersal of the family, it just felt like I needed to be here as a guardian or keeper of the energy for whatever reason. This is where Father Yod/Yahowha left his body and a residue of that energy link is still here for me.

The Writing Disorder: What was your family life like?

Isis Aquarian: My mom was very beautiful and had seven children. She raised us with kindness and love. I never remember having TV dinners, etc. She always made the best home made meals and was very creative in making sure we had what we needed. My mother was saint.

My dad on the other hand was strict, and as was somewhat typical for lifers in the military, became an alcoholic. This was during the ‘50s and ‘60s, and that was mentality of men back then. Living with an alcoholic is not easy, and he was at times abusive and mean. He had his demons for sure but he was able to find some level of letting it all go as he was passing over.

Both my parents were allowed to leave the body in their own home and with a natural passing with their family around them. So that was a blessing for them and for us. And in all fairness, I will say that I knew my dad tried his best and in his own way loved us and wanted what was best for us. He was shut down emotionally and his way of love and giving to us, was making sure he provided for us.

The Writing Disorder: Tell us about your school life.

Isis Aquarian: Being pulled in and out of so many schools is all I remember, and having to have some steal armor to leave one and then step into another as always the new kid and having to fit in or not. I did great in high school so that was not a bad experience for me.

The Writing Disorder: Any brothers or sisters? Did you get along well?

Isis Aquarian: I am the oldest of seven, with three girls and four boys. It seemed to me that we did not get along that well all the time. Since everyone ended up with their own family and lives and children it was amicable, and in the present it is fine and we have reunions every so often, but not so much since our parents have passed. I have stayed close to my one sister, Roberta, who is my Daughter’s God Parent. In fact we both live in Hawaii and she has been a great supporter of my projects and works in the now.

The Writing Disorder: What did your parents do for a living? Were you a close family?

Isis Aquarian: Mom was a housewife and the best mother ever. Dad, chief of documentations for the Air force, retired in the ‘60s. Both lived out the rest of their lives in their home in Oregon.

isis at lecture

The Writing Disorder: What do you remember most about your childhood?

Isis Aquarian: Bits and pieces of different places we lived, having to go to Catholic church every Sunday—bits and pieces of different schools.

The Writing Disorder: What are some of your fondest memories?

Isis Aquarian: My Mother’s laughter, and her kindness and goodness. Also, knowing that I had gained a certain degree of strength and fearlessness and self confidence in my own abilities by the time I left home to go out and start my own journey. I was not intimidated or shy and I made things happen. I absolutely knew and felt that growing up I had some heavy other realm guides and help, which I tuned into and carried with me to this day.

The Writing Disorder: What were some of your disappointments?

Isis Aquarian: Many disappointments at the time it happened, but soon the reality that all things happens for a reason and for the betterment of myself and journey always, always, always kicked in to show me why it did not happen the way I wanted or thought. So basically no disappointments, with me about myself or life. However, being a mother there are always some things a mother always feels she could have done better :))

The Writing Disorder: What music did you listen to, books did you read, cultural influences on your life?

Isis Aquarian: I left home in the ‘60s, very shortly after graduating from high school. I had a culturally influenced social and work life living in Washington, D.C., working within the Whitehouse circles and other social events. Then I moved to New York City and was part of a great cultural circle there with some of it being a small part of the Andy Warhol and Salvador Dali social groups. Then moving to L.A. and being a part of a great social circle there and meeting Jim Baker at his Old World restaurant. But not really connecting with him yet, I actually became a friend of his wife at the time, Dora. Then I ended up with a famous rock and roll photographer and entered that life. And then back to Jim Baker who then had The Source restaurant and was being called Father and had started his spiritual path in earnest and that’s when I joined him. Once again being in the midst of all the mover and shakers of the time and the famous people who all came to the restaurant. But one needs to remember that in those times it was very free and allowing. Anyone could walk into any party or gathering or even someone’s house and end up being part of the energy.

The Writing Disorder: What were your first feelings of independence?

Isis Aquarian: When I left home and moved to Washington, D.C. —really away from everyone and just responsible for myself. I was excited and fearless.

The Writing Disorder: Who had the biggest influence on you growing up?

Isis Aquarian: I am sure someone or something was … but you know I cannot recall anything to say. I just always felt like I was passing through this life on a journey and did not belong, kind of like I was a witness to it all moving through sections of it until I was to find a timing where it would all make sense and present itself to me. And I would say that probably was when I stepped onto the patio of The Source and saw my friend Jim Baker after a few years and he was now Father, who looked like Moses and there was a whole new spiritual exodus happening—which we termed the Aquarian exodus. This time in The Source adventure was a whole new type of growing up and learning … it was a spiritual mystery school.

The Writing Disorder: Did your family travel, take vacations growing up?

Isis Aquarian: With seven kids it was hard to do anything. I remember my dad wanting to get stationed overseas so we could experience that. But because he had so many kids they would not do it. I think we got to do a lot of whatever was available where ever we were living. And the one time we did do a road trip together, it was just so insane that it never happened again. Seven kids and a dog in a station wagon driving across country … is all I can say.

the source restaurant
The Source restaurant — where it once was on Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles

The Writing Disorder: Talk about when you first moved out of your parent’s home and lived on your own for the first time. Where did you go? What was that experience like?

Isis Aquarian: Living in Florida, father was in the Air Force and was chief of documentation, so he worked out of Cape Kennedy. I was the oldest of seven children, if you can imagine that, I had graduated high school and 1 year of college, did some local acting and modeling, and wanted something else. So I got a job with our senator and went to Washington, D.C. It was amazing and exciting and fun and that feeling you get when “ANY THING IS POSSIBLE” AND YOU’RE YOUNG — and believe it. I never felt like I was sheltered or shy so this was a no brainer for me … and I was so ready to get away from home.

I always had the inner drive that I needed to go out and explore and so I started my life journey/path and never looked back. I always stayed in touch with my parents, especially my mom, and would go visit them, but I absolutely was on my own and it felt good.

The Writing Disorder: You worked in the White House in Washington. How did that come about? What was it like being around that scene during those times?

Isis Aquarian: To tell you the truth I never really liked President Johnson. Kennedy had just been assassinated and there were rumors right from the start of something not being right, not to mention we were in shock as he was much love. I was working in the Capitol and you meet people because you are all there or go to the same parties, etc. Much like Hollywood … best way to make contacts. I became a D.C. beauty queen. I was a princess in the Miss Cherry Blossom Pageant, which is a big deal in spring there, and then started to do a lot of socializing and volunteer work for various cool events.

I had a friend who was working in the social group of the white house aids and one day she introduced me to Patrick Nugent (who was engaged to Lucy Johnson) he asked me if I wanted to work on a program he was involved with and I said yes. It was a savings bonds drive and they made me Miss Savings Bonds and I did some P.R. and promotion with Robert McNamara and Cyrus Vance … so this started my social aid with White House programs. There seemed to be a lot of who’s who and titles with people and the social scene was somewhat back biting and I really did not think that was the way I wanted to go with my life. I saw how stressful and fake a lot of people were and what they had to do to get to top and I did not want to end up being a wife of someone like that. Braniff Airlines was hot then, they had colored planes in the sky and wore Pucci design uniforms and they were hiring so I thought I could travel which is what I really wanted to do. So I got a job with Braniff and decided to be transferred to NYC with them.

The Writing Disorder: Then you went to New York and met Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali. Talk about that whole social scene. Where were you living? What did you do for work?

Isis Aquarian: New York City was very hip and cool and for me more real … I loved it! I made some good social contacts and it was a time of being able to just drop in on anyone or party. You would just go out that night and catch the latest buzz on what was happening and where, and just go and take it from there. This included Andy Warhol. I must say I was never exactly in his inner circle and thank God for that. Way too much drugs and all that comes with that. But it was fun and it was through being at one of his gatherings that I met Salvador Dali—in an elevator of all places , and we were both going up to the party so we hung out for awhile. The ‘60s were anything goes and anything could happen and it was no big deal. It was a flow that happened and it worked. I once again hit the social scene. Then the Hippie/flower children concept was creeping in with the Beatles, gurus, the music and dress, etc. but that was in California. I met a young girl who would come visit, she was the cousin of the guy I was dating, and she was so perky and happy and so California. NY started to seem dark and I wanted to know what was happening in L.A. I had a bookie friend who lived in New Jersey and he was a childhood friend of Joey Bishop and Joey was doing his new TV show on ABC. He knew I could fly out for free so asked me if I wanted to go and I did. L.A. and its ambience hit me hard. I met Rob Reiner as he was a friend of Larry Bishop (Joey’s son) and we dated. This is what I had been looking for, and something new was happening and I wanted in on it. I dropped out, moved to L.A. became a hippie/flower child met incredible people and experienced the beauty of pureness and spirit and people relating in the now—soul to soul with kindness and non judgment and it was a lot of fun. This was my crossover into the mystical/spiritual realms.

The Writing Disorder: You gave up your life married to a famous rock photographer. Talk about those times and some of the things you both experienced.

Isis Aquarian: I always worked, never completely dropped out in that way, and was able to have a great house on this hill overlooking the Hollywood Bowl. You had to take an elevator to get to the top homes or walk a shit load of stairs. I hung out in Laurel Canyon a lot and knew some of the GTO’s girls, and the cast of Hair. Some of them lived just a few houses down from me on the hilltop. Everyone just had an open door and could go where ever. There was a shoot for a photographer for Jimi Hendrix and a friend of mine said I should go and be in it. So I did and met Ron Raffaelli who was picked by Jimi to be his personal photographer and he was one of the most famous rock ‘n roll photographers and poster-makers—pretty much shot all the groups and their albums. It was instant with us and I moved into his studio and became a part of that. We quickly got engaged.

The Writing Disorder: And then in L.A., you found Father Yod. How did you first meet?

Isis Aquarian: I had met Jim Baker when he owned the famous Old World Restaurant on Sunset Blvd. He had also opened the Aware Inn, the first organic health food restaurant in the country (Greta Garbo was his first customer). He was a legend in his time and in Hollywood.

Steve Allen was his best friend and Jack LaLanne … along with the Nature boys. The Old World was a place that everyone came to—you name them, they were there. He was married to a French girl, Dora, and we became friends. I liked Jim but there seemed to be what I call a hold on us. We were friendly but did not really connect, but I always remembered him. I had met Ron and kind of moved into another crowd and so had lost touch for awhile with Jim and Dora. It was when Ron needed some Jesus looking people for a Jesus Christ Superstar poster that I flashed on him again as I had heard he opened THE SOURCE and the small group there were wearing robes, or all white and had long hair and beards and looked like Jesus. I told Ron that I would go check it out to find some models.

isis under tree

The Writing Disorder: Where were you living in Los Angeles? What were your expectations after first meeting him?

Isis Aquarian: Well, Jim baker was no longer the Jim Baker I knew. He had since become a student of Yogi Bhajan, and started his cross over in spirit. He was no longer with Dora and he looked like Moses. I stepped onto The Source patio and he came out followed by a small band of women and men, smiling and said, “Welcome home.” It was suddenly, “THIS IS IT!” It truly was what I had been waiting for. It was as if his frequency had joined mine and lifted me up. I went to morning class the next day and started my morphing out of my old life and into my new one. I asked Ron to go with me and he freaked out and said I was crazy. So I left and once again, never looked back. It was so right, finally! I left everything, and it was great. I was now living in a mansion, communally, and experiencing the mystery teachings and spirit in a way that was not just a mental concept, but a true living energy of the heart and mind. And I was ready to go on this journey.

The Writing Disorder: What do you remember most about living in Los Angeles in the ‘70s?

Isis Aquarian: How open it was and accepting if you were cool you could go anywhere and the pureness of the time was … so free and kind and so much spirit happening, it was awesome, and the dress code was off the charts—it was living many past lifetimes as anything goes.

The Writing Disorder: So you went to concerts and parties and met a lot of celebrities. Any memorable encounters?

Isis Aquarian: I first dated Rob Reiner when I got to L.A., and I knew Richard Dreyfuss and his friends. The GTO’S GIRLS from the Frank Zappa group—dated very, very briefly Dennis Hopper. It was so open, like I said, and the in-crowd, actors and the famous all lived there so it was easy. Then, of course, the major rock groups, as we shot them all in the studio and then The Source where they all came in daily.

The Writing Disorder: When did you first learn about Father Yod’s other wives?

Isis Aquarian: Father was married and only had the one wife In the beginning of the early family days, with all others ending up with who they wanted. And then one day he took on another women and that started the possibilities of different other women being with Father Yod/Yahowha And in San Francisco he sealed the final 14 women as his wives and that was that. We were a sisterhood to begin with so it worked for me.

The Writing Disorder: How did you get the name Dragon Lady?

Isis Aquarian: Being given full reign from father, as administrator, and creating the archives and saving the legacy.

The Writing Disorder: Did your sense of family, what it means to have a family, change once you began living with Father Yod?

Isis Aquarian: Since I left home I always stayed in touch with my mom. She always knew where I was. I was oldest of seven children, then became engaged to Ron and we started a family energy and then The Source. It was like the physical and cosmic family when I came to The Source, and I started anew. I used the wisdom of Father Yod in raising my daughter, and my continuing life journey.

The Writing Disorder: Have you stayed in touch with your parents and siblings through the years?

Isis Aquarian: Yes, we have Peter’s reunions every once in a while in Oregon. Both my parents have passed over.

The Writing Disorder: The move to Hawaii, was this an escape from the Hollywood lifestyle?

Isis Aquarian: No, it was because we wanted land, and to live in a dome community and grow food and be left alone from the authorities. It was the mindset of that time with many people that some type of stuff would be hitting the fan, and Father wanted us out of the city and safe.

The Writing Disorder: Talk about the life you’ve made for yourself in Hawaii, and how it’s changed over the years.

Isis Aquarian: I have lived off and on here since I was seven, and it has always been home for me and my soul. Of course it changed—every place has changed. But it is a very special spiritual place and has never lost its uniqueness and island kindness and spirit of aloha. I live in Kailua a very nice area in a great house near the ocean and my sister Roberta lives upstairs in her own place.

The Writing Disorder: Is it paradise for you?

Isis Aquarian: Yes, although things are changing all over the world. But still “ohana” (family) among the islanders is still alive and well!

The Writing Disorder: How did your first book, "The Source," come about?

Isis Aquarian: About 13 years ago I was flashing on how after almost 40 years no one had done anything with the legacy of our family. It felt like we were flatlining with no heartbeat. I was in my 60’s and thinking, Oh my God, this incredible journey should be shared and someone needs to do a book. I never intended to be the one to do the book but I had the archives, and so I was going to work with who ever did the book and give them photos and be part of the creative remembering, etc. Father had made me the family Historian and archive keeper and told me that this genre I was doing would save the legacy — and it did. Over the course of a year I had asked, even begged at least five source family members to come on board and do this project and they all said either no or they were too busy, or why? So after about two years of this I got mad and said, okay, I will do it myself—since I seemed to be the only one passionate about it. So that is just what I did. Once I started the project in earnest a source brother, Electricity, saw how bad I needed help, so he committed in to doing this book project with me. For once he said he wanted to know the complete story and remember, as he had not been there during the whole adventure, and second, we both agreed it would be great not only for the family to have their legacy for remembrance but for their partners and their children to know. It was a daunting seven years that we worked like madmen and we finally got it together and sent it to a small printer and had 250 copies made to sell to family members and put up on our website. Then I got a call from Jodi Wille out of L.A. saying she found out about us and was completely fascinated and could not believe she did know more about Father and the Family and she was a publisher and did I want to do a book. After laughing hysterically for 15 minutes, I said where were you seven years ago—we just finished a book but it is more for the family than the public. She said, “I can fly to Hawaii this week and we can talk.” Well, she did and we talked and signed an agreement and she basically edited and reworked our book and went through my archives and went back to L.A. and spent another year with us reworking the material and we came out the other end with the amazing book that is now out … and being very well received.

The Writing Disorder: What was it like putting all that information together for the first time in a book?

Isis Aquarian: It was awesome and daunting because I was finding that I was not remembering a lot, or I was remembering my own take or reality of it. So it was good to work with other family memories as back up for this. And it opened a whole new world of seeing our journey back then. In the now of some 40 years later, with hindsight, the what if and should of or could ofs, and yet with being able to see all and both sides of it with each other and the public we were dealing with — especially re-listening to Fathers morning meditation tapes. They were the most surreal as you were hearing his voice and all that happen as it happened in that time. It was the real deal and still is.

The Writing Disorder: Did that process help you in other projects you worked on?

Isis Aquarian: It was the foundation of everything that has happened since — the comic book, the Source Family Documentary, events, interviews and other projects still in the works.

The Writing Disorder: Do you write stories or poetry?

Isis Aquarian: I do my own style of writing, more as a diary or archiving. I have some incredible flashes and cosmic ideas and will write them down and then rework the concept to fit something I am doing or saying. What I did do was write down our family wisdom sayings or hits and then I put them on a CD by speaking the words only but with music, called “Echoes of Crone” you tube has a hit of it.

The Writing Disorder: What projects are you working on now?

Isis Aquarian: Over 500 morning class tapes of Father Yod, transferring to mp files off cassettes, and putting them out with Global recording artist in a series, getting the book ready for a new update and reprinting with new distributors, getting ready for the release of the Source Documentary with Drag City as distributor, helping maintain the foundation website, gearing up for a coffee table type photo book of the family time, and securing a gallery opening is also in the works. There are some things that could be major if they go through but I cannot talk about them now. But if it comes through before you print I will let you know.

The Writing Disorder: What would you like to accomplish before you leave this life?

Isis Aquarian: I am pretty well seeing it being done already, so now it is just to degrees of improving it all.

The Writing Disorder: What are your beliefs and expectations of an afterlife?

Isis Aquarian: I feel there are many other realms to experience and have already, that this Earth experience has just been one of them. For me, death is just shedding the garment that was chosen to house my soul and spirit, and the real part of us does not die. We come in alone and as a physical birth and we leave alone as a spiritual birth. Father did say to us that he was going to Sirius to prepare our next home/journey so who knows. I am at peace with this subject.

The Writing Disorder: Tell us some of your thoughts about Father Yod.

Isis Aquarian: Quasi-divine … legend in Hollywood, hero and now cult hero. Things mutate for evolution, why not the same with our evolutionary path from human to a spiritual being—a higher form.

For me ... I once heard him say ... This is for you/us. He DID WANT the WISDOM SHARED and said he would still be doing so long after he was gone, in the music he created. He knew other things would be presented with archives to represent us and our story, as we were part of a historical time frame and crossover. Each is a thread now merging with other threads to create the tapestry. He also said what we needed for our crossover in the ’70s was a teacher. But in times to come, and with next generation, there would be NO MORE MIDDLEMAN. And I am finding that to be true in the now. Back then we had little resources, anything we found was like Gold and of course what Father Yod gave us WAS to fill in the cracks to make it a whole. But now with the Internet and YouTube, Etc., being at one’s fingertips (new library of Alexandria) it is all there for everyone to take, understand accordingly to find their path ... no steps can be skipped. We will always hold Father near and dear and our time in the Source family as it was for us and our time. So for me there will always be somewhat over the top honor and respect, and if someone wants to call it Yahowhaism to degrees, well that is the thread and frequency I am still operating in with that soul. When you live and breath with the archives, and doing projects everyday, you are hearing his tapes or talking about it in events, book signings, interviews and documentaries. It keeps you in that loop. For those who have not been to my home in Hawaii, it is loaded with all things Father Yod and The Source—walls, tables, shelves, work area, etc. It is hard for me to separate myself from it. It is everywhere, in my home, car and wherever. Jim Baker, Father Yod and Yahowha, deserves to be documented as he was very much a part of the ’60s and ’70s history, as the colorful person he was and all he did … He was long a Hollywood Legend before even starting The Source. WE HAVE HISTORICAL AND CULTURE RELEVANCE and our book is in the top universities with some giving their classes on the subject. I have done several Q and As with classes. We are being studied by Scholars and students :)) Anything I do is not to gain new followers. I want to share instead of teach and have friends and supporters rather than students. We were just part of a time frame and we have our story/thread and it has been shared, embraced and enjoyed along with so much more out there and so many others. I love the term Quasi-Divine ... when the human and the spirit or Godhood unite, with no competition or compromise within a human incarnation and it is carried through to the end. It is the next evolutionary process of humankind to a spiritual being, which helps me explain who Father was and how we saw him and how we all are now supposed to do the same.

I would say the Legacy has been saved and well embraced.

All photos: Isis Archives

father yod
Father Yod

To learn more about Father Yod and The Source, visit: Ya Ho Wha

Visit this site for the new documentary film: The Source Family

View video clips of Isis Aquarian: YouTube

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